MoneyGeek ranked the leading auto insurers based on factors like affordability, customer satisfaction and others to help you get the best car insurance in Illinois. Criteria like age, driving record and location play a role in determining your auto insurance cost. It’s a smart idea to look around and get several quotes to find the best policy for your needs. MoneyGeek's ratings illustrate a potential savings of $880 when comparing car insurance premiums from top-rated companies in Illinois.
The Best Cheap Car Insurance in Illinois for 2021
The Cheapest and Best Car Insurance in Illinois
Cheapest Minimum Liability Car Insurance Companies and Quotes in Illinois
The cheapest car insurance for Illinois drivers is a minimum liability-only policy, which meets the state minimum requirements. It will give you protection against expenses related to the driver of another vehicle in case you get involved in an at-fault accident. However, it won’t cover damage to your car.
MoneyGeek evaluated car insurance companies in Illinois and found that the cheapest options for minimum coverage are:
- GEICO: $366 per year
- Mercury: $367 per year
Based on average rates, MetLife has the most expensive car insurance for minimum coverage at $852 per year.
Average Cost for Minimun Liability Coverage
These prices are only estimates based on rates for an average Illinois driver and should not be used to compare insurance prices.
A policy with only the minimum state liability requirements only covers bodily injury, property damage liability and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Consider a full coverage policy if you want protection against possible expenses for damages to your own car. You should also get full coverage if you want to increase the amount of your liability coverage.
Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance in Illinois
Illinois drivers who want protection against most road accidents and off-road incidents should consider getting a full coverage policy with higher liability limits and comprehensive and collision insurance. While this type of policy will cost more than minimum coverage insurance, it also covers the cost of damages to your car. Comparing personalized car insurance quotes from different insurers will help you find the best policy at the lowest price.
Based on average rates for full coverage insurance, the cheapest car insurance companies in Illinois are:
- GEICO: $789 per year
- Mercury: $860 per year
The most expensive car insurance company in Illinois for a similar policy is AAA, with an average rate of $1,669 per year.
Average Comprehensive and Collision Rates in Illinois
Car insurance premiums depend on individual needs and circumstances, so your rate will be different from these examples. These prices are for an insurance policy with comprehensive and collision coverage that allows you to claim up to $100,000 for bodily injury liability per person, $300,000 for bodily injury liability coverage per accident and $100,000 for property damage per accident.
The Best Car Insurance Companies in Illinois for 2021
MoneyGeek’s analysis found that the best car insurance companies in Illinois for most drivers are:
- Best Overall: Erie
- Runner-up: The Hartford
USAA received the highest score in Illinois by MoneyGeek's rating system. However, because USAA is only available to military members, veterans and their families, it is not listed as best overall.
MoneyGeek analyzed various factors, including financial strength, claims experience, affordability and customer satisfaction, to rank the best car insurance providers in Illinois. To get a score for each parameter, MoneyGeek evaluated data from both AM Best’s financial strength ratings and J.D. Power’s U.S. Auto Insurance Study, which are widely used in the industry for insurance carrier reviews and ratings. MoneyGeek gave equal weight to each study, along with pricing data, to compute the final rating score out of 100.
USAA earned a perfect score after receiving high ratings on user satisfaction, claims ratings and affordability. However, only Kentucky drivers who are current or former military members qualify for USAA policies.
In spite of its restrictions, USAA is consistently among the companies offering the cheapest auto insurance across the country. The same is true in Illinois. Additionally, drivers whose parents had USAA policies may be eligible for a significant discount since the company rewards loyal customers.Read MoneyGeek's USAA auto Insurance Review
After receiving high ratings across many categories, Erie comes in second place. It is also the best option in Illinois if you do not qualify for a USAA policy.
One advantage of an Erie auto insurance policy is that it includes personal item coverage. That means the items inside your car are included in the policy coverage. Erie policyholders also have the option to get the Rate Lock feature, which guarantees that rates will remain unchanged each year as long as there are no changes in the policy.Read MoneyGeek's Erie auto Insurance Review
While USAA scores highly in many areas, this provider is only available to military members, veterans and their families.
List of the Largest Insurance Companies in Illinois
The top three largest auto insurance providers in Illinois by market share are State Farm, Allstate and Progressive. Market share is based on the number of premiums a company has written divided by the total number of premiums written in the state. The largest companies do not necessarily offer the best policies for every driver. However, they do provide added financial security.
- CompanyMarket Share
How to Compare Cheap Illinois Car Insurance Quotes Online
Most car insurance companies in Illinois allow drivers to get accurate quotes using an online tool. To find the best car insurance, research policies with enough coverage for your needs.
- Be consistent with how much coverage is included in the policy when comparing quotes. For example, if you get a quote for a policy with $50,000 in bodily liability coverage per accident from one insurer, use the same number when getting quotes from other carriers.
- Enter your ZIP code below to compare quotes. You can also use MoneyGeek’s price data to figure out which websites you will shop on.
- GEICO, Mercury and Country Financial have the most affordable average rates in Illinois. You can begin your search by getting quotes from these companies.
What Is the Average Cost of Car Insurance in Illinois?
Many factors influence auto insurance rates in Illinois. MoneyGeek computed the average prices for 100/300/100 comprehensive and collision insurance for a 40-year-old male driver of a Toyota Camry without any record of accidents or tickets. Depending on your age, driving history, location and coverage level, your auto insurance premium may be lower or higher than these Illinois averages.
- Average Driver: $1,134
- DUI: $2,181
- Speeding Ticket: $1,452
- Poor Credit Score: $1,944
- Seniors: $1,183
- Students: $3,133
Cheapest Car Insurance for Drivers With a DUI in Illinois
A serious driving violation, such as a DUI, will increase your car insurance rate in Illinois since you will be considered a riskier driver. On average, Illinois drivers with a DUI on their record pay around $2,181 per year. An average driver with a clean record pays an average of $1,134 per year.
The cheapest car insurance in Illinois for drivers with a DUI are from:
- State Farm: $1,035 per year
- Progressive: $1,080
Although GEICO and Mercury are the cheapest insurance carriers for drivers with a clean record, State Farm and Progressive are the most affordable options for those with a DUI.
Average Car Insurance Rates With a DUI
Getting a DUI can greatly affect your chances of getting affordable car insurance rates in the state of Illinois. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2.2% of drivers in Illinois have admitted driving after having too much to drink within the past 30 days. 3,148 people in Illinois died from 2009-2018 due to accidents caused by alcohol-impaired drivers. On average, 18 arrests per 100,000 people in Illinois are for driving while under the influence. The following table is an estimate of what people who have a DUI can expect to pay when they start looking for auto insurance in Illinois.
A DUI can impact auto insurance rates for as long as it stays on your criminal record. Drivers with repeated offenses can lose their license for ten years in Illinois. You can expect to pay higher rates which can increase your insurance premiums to well over $20,000. With a DUI, you will want to compare car insurance quotes to find the best rate in Illinois based on your personal factors.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Drivers With Tickets in Illinois
Illinois drivers with minor driving violations tend to have higher rates than those with clean records. A speeding ticket increases the average rate of comprehensive and collision insurance to $1,452 per year. That is higher than the average rate for drivers with clean records, which is $1,134 per year.
Illinois drivers with a speeding ticket can find the cheapest full coverage insurance policy from:
- GEICO: $960 per year
- State Farm: $1,035 per year
While Mercury offers the second most affordable rates for a driver with a clean record and full coverage, State Farm has lower rates for drivers with speeding tickets on record.
Average Car Insurance Rates With a Ticket
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 948 crashes in Illinois due to distracted driving in 2018. Handheld devices and texting are against the law and can cause you to get a ticket for distracted driving in Illinois, which can reduce your chances of getting cheap car insurance.
To get the best rates, know the posted speed limit and avoid speeding. Also, don’t use your phone or drive while distracted, which can include talking with passengers or eating and drinking. Expect a ticket to increase your insurance rates for the same amount of time it stays on your driving record.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Illinois for Drivers With Bad Credit
Car insurance companies in Illinois tend to charge higher rates for drivers with poor credit scores. The average rate is $1,944 per year, which is $810 more than the annual average premium for a driver with good credit.
The cheapest car insurance companies for Illinois drivers with poor credit and full coverage are:
- Country Financial: $1,182 per year
- Mercury: $1,365 per year
Country Financial has lower rates for drivers with poor credit scores than GEICO, which is the cheapest option for the average driver with good credit.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Drivers With Bad Credit
Credit scores are used in Illinois to determine the financial ability to pay insurance premiums and the likelihood of making an insurance claim. According to Experian, the average credit score in Illinois is 709, which means most residents can likely qualify for affordable car insurance. An insurance company should tell you if they use a scoring model when you request your free car insurance quotes. Checking your credit for an insurance quote will not affect your score negatively. The following table provides estimates of what Illinois residents with bad credit can expect to pay for auto insurance in the state.
Scoring criteria that provides insurance rates is not the same as applying for a loan or mortgage and varies for each insurance company. Even if you think you have bad credit, you might still qualify for cheap insurance. Here are some tips on raising your credit score, which can help improve insurance rate quotes.
Cheapest Car Insurance in Illinois for Seniors
Usually, senior drivers in Illinois have higher premiums compared to young adults and middle-aged drivers. The average rate for senior drivers in Illinois is $1,183 per year. A 40-year-old average driver in Illinois typically pays $1,134 annually.
The cheapest options for senior drivers in Illinois with full coverage are:
- GEICO: $782 per year
- Country Financial: $866 per year
Mercury is the second cheapest car insurance company for a 40-year-old driver with full coverage, but Country Financial has lower rates for senior drivers with a similar policy.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Seniors
Elderly residents over the age of 65 can expect to take a Rules of the Road course and a written exam before renewing their driver’s license in Illinois. They will have to retake the driving test when they turn 75.
The above table provides estimates of what seniors in Illinois can expect to pay for auto insurance.
Seniors can have slower reaction time behind the wheel but also tend to take more precautions than other age groups when driving. If you have a senior with a clean driving history and good credit, you can still qualify for cheap car insurance in Illinois.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Students in Illinois
Young student drivers in Illinois tend to have higher insurance rates than adult and middle-aged drivers due to their inexperience. The average annual cost of car insurance for students in Illinois is $3,133. A similar policy only costs $1,134 per year for the average driver.
MoneyGeek found that the cheapest car insurance companies for student drivers with full coverage in Illinois are:
- Progressive: $2,212 per year
- GEICO: $2,351 per year
Progressive offers lower full coverage rates for students than GEICO and Mercury, which are the cheapest options for a similar policy for a 40-year-old driver.
Average Car Insurance Rates for Students
If you’re a parent of a teenager or a college student, you should expect to pay more for premiums to insure the riskiest age group of drivers compared to other age groups. However, there are discounts available that help drive these costs down. While your teen driver is just starting out, you can add them to your plan. This is a much more affordable option than getting them their own policy. You should shop around for the best options and premiums for your teen and college-aged driver.
If your college student is more than 100 miles away at school and did not take a car with them, a discount may be available. Students with a “B” GPA or higher can also help reduce insurance premiums through good student discounts. Those savings can quickly evaporate since tickets for speeding and distracted driving can drive up costs. Young drivers should eliminate distractions and avoid speeding to maintain cheap and affordable car insurance in Illinois. The following table provides some estimates of what parents can expect to pay for their young driver’s auto insurance.
Insurance Rate Information for Military Drivers and Veterans
Many insurance companies in Illinois offer discounted rates to active duty military and veterans. Armed Forces Insurance (AFI), founded in 1887, is one company that caters exclusively to veterans and military families. Essentially, AFI is owned by its policyholders.
By comparing quotes and shopping around, military families stationed in Illinois can save money and possibly enjoy additional discounts. With more than 20,500 active-duty military personnel living in the state, Illinois requires proof of policy before you can show up at the DMV to register your vehicle. The Illinois Department of Insurance operates a consumer services division with staff to answer questions about the state's auto insurance requirements.
The following table provides estimates of what military members and their families can expect to pay for auto insurance in Illinois.
Average Rates for Illinois service members
Car Insurance in Illinois: What You Need to Know
If you register and drive a car in Illinois, you must acquire insurance. The good news: that 1968 Mustang you've been working on for years in the garage does not need insurance as long as it remains inoperable. However, you may want to consider comprehensive-only coverage for theft and weather protection.
Proof of Insurance in Illinois
Proof of insurance in Illinois can either be printed on a card or stored on an electronic device, such as a smartphone. The information on the card — vehicle year, make, model and identification number — should match the car you're driving. Your card should also contain the insurance company name, the policy number and the dates the policy is valid for. In addition, the card should include the name of the insured driver, which should match the name on your driver's license.
You'll need proof of insurance when:
- You're pulled over for a traffic offense
- You've been in an accident
- You reply to the Illinois insurance questionnaire
- You register your vehicle or renew the registration
Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements in Illinois
Before 2015, Illinois used to require less insurance than most other states. But the state has since raised the minimum levels to typical coverage levels:
- $25,000 liability coverage per person
- $50,000 liability coverage per accident
- $20,000 property damage coverage
- $20,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
- $40,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
Uninsured motorist insurance will cover you if your car is struck in a hit-and-run accident or by someone with no liability insurance. If you buy more than the minimum required for uninsured motorist insurance, you'll also need to get underinsured motorist insurance. This way, if an underinsured driver is at fault, your policy will pay the difference between that driver's liability insurance and the amount of uninsured motorist coverage you purchased.
Alternatives to Insurance in Illinois
Unless you own a fleet of more than 25 vehicles, Illinois doesn't offer any insurance alternatives. However, if you have 26 vehicles or more, you can choose to self-insure them.
High-Risk Auto Insurance Program in Illinois
"Problem drivers" with a history of accidents or severe driving violations may have to carry financial responsibility insurance (SR-22). This requires a driver to put down a deposit or file a bond worth $70,000 to prove that they will be able to cover any future accidents.
How Much Coverage Do You Need in Illinois?
The cheapest car insurance available may not be an option for you. The minimum level of liability insurance doesn't cover your own vehicle or potential injuries. Your personal needs and finances should guide your decision, but insurance experts generally recommend buying $100,000/$300,000 of liability coverage for full protection.
You may benefit from other types of insurance as well. Illinois is bordered by the Mississippi River and is thus at risk of flooding. Comprehensive coverage can help owners repair or replace cars damaged by floods and other natural disasters, while collision insurance protects cars damaged by other vehicles.
Average Insurance Rate by City in Illinois
FAQs About Car Insurance in Illinois
The most common questions that Illinois drivers ask about car insurance center around the cost and coverage level.
Expert Advice on Finding Cheap Car Insurance in Illinois
To help you find trustworthy and accurate details on car insurance in Illinois, MoneyGeek gathered expert advice from established professionals. The perspectives and sentiments conveyed are those of the individual contributor.
- What are the key factors drivers in Illinois should look for when searching for reliable and affordable coverage?
- How do regulations and rules in Illinois impact insurance pricing and how consumers might shop for coverage?
- What natural or environmental factors should drivers in Illinois consider when shopping for the best car insurance coverage?
- What steps can drivers in Illinois take to find affordable car insurance?
Associate Professor of Business at Moraine Valley Community College
Assistant Professor of Finance at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Professor of Finance and Quantitative Methods at Bradley University
Associate Professor of Economics at Northeastern Illinois University
Assistant Professor of Finance at Millikin University
About the Author
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- National Association of Insurance Commissioners. "2018 Market Share Reports." Accessed March 2, 2020.
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. "2017 Data - Older Population." Accessed January 13, 2021.
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. "Distracted Driving." Accessed March 2, 2020.
- NOLO Driving Laws. "Illinois Drunk Driving Fines & Penalties." Accessed March 2, 2020.
- Office of the Illinois Secretary of State. "Programs for Seniors." Accessed March 3, 2020.